Precision in the Woodshop - Popular Woodworking Magazine

Precision in the Woodshop

 In April 2018 #238, Popular Woodworking Magazine Article Index

PRECISION in the WoodshopYou’re measuring wrong, and making it more difficult to do good work.

by Raney Nelson
pages 42-45

If the title has you expecting high-tech procedures or suggestions for expensive measurement gear that’ll get you closer to angstrom-level measurements, then let me disappoint you quite thoroughly before paragraph one ends. This isn’t that kind of party.

That shouldn’t suggest that I’m going to advocate anything remotely resembling a lazy, “close-enough” approach, though. Not even a little. In fact, I think the most common source of problems in the shop is in taking and working with measurements – sloppy doesn’t cut it.

What I am going to suggest is that there are a lot of misconceptions about the whole idea of “precision” that are not doing anyone any favors – misconceptions that are thoroughly tangled up with an inherited approach to measurement that could really use a head-on evaluation.

Before getting to any concrete suggestions, though, you’ll have to grant me a bit of latitude in the trail we take to get there. Is my route the best one, or just the result of adult ADHD? Probably both – but that’s your call. It’s the only way I know to make the case properly.

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